06 August 2007

Eco community centre wins Swansea award

A new environmentally-friendly community centre has scooped a top award in a celebration of excellence in building in Swansea.

The £1.8 million Forge Fach community centre in Clydach, built by Swansea-based construction firm Midas, won the category for large commercial buildings in this year’s Best in Quality Awards, organised by Swansea council.

The awards recognise developments that have gone the extra mile in terms of building control and illustrating excellence in building practice.

Judges recognised that Midas had caring for the environment as a top priority when constructing the Forge Fach community centre. More than a quarter of the stone used in the project had been recycled, the cedar cladding came from managed sources, and the external surface rendering was designed to minimise maintenance and avoid the need for air conditioning.

The state-of-the-art building took just over a year to complete and includes crèche facilities, an internet café, a conference and sports hall, office space for local entrepreneurs and an external multi-games area. It also houses the Learning Shop, providing educational resources for the community.

Midas worked in conjunction with the City and County of Swansea and the Forge Fach Community Trust in Clydach, and the scheme was financed largely with European money. Built on the site of an old swimming pool demolished in 2002, the centre was officially opened by Welsh Assembly First Minister Rhodri Morgan.

Midas’s project the Waterfront Community Church, one of the first new churches to be built in Swansea for decades, was runner up in the awards.

Midas Divisional Manager Gareth Reynolds said: “It is an absolute delight to see the hard work of our team being acknowledged for the good quality work that we produce for our customers, and shows our continued commitment to the West Wales region as a whole.”

The awards were presented by Welsh TV presenter Amanda Protheroe-Thomas  at the Liberty Stadium, and the winners now go forward to the South Wales Awards in Cardiff on 23 March. Winners there are entered into the national awards held in London in October.

Peter Richards, Swansea council’s Principal Building Control Officer, said: “This year’s winners have all shown a high standard in build quality and have gone that extra mile to ensure issues such as access, compliance with building regulations, and health and safety have been addressed.

“Swansea is a vibrant, growing, 21st-century city. We can all see the developments going on around us and it’s good to know that the work of our building control team ensures that the building standards are extremely high.”


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